Chocolate pasta suspended for drying.
For this round of TGRWT I decided to use the recipe (Chocolate Carbonara with Parmigiano Reggiano Cream and a Chocolate-Dipped Grissini Wrapped in Prosciutto di Parma) by Masaharu Morimoto which I’ve blogged about previously. I was quite intrigued by that recipe and wanted to try it! So here it is, converted to metric units with some small adjustments. The original recipe called for 4 eggs, but this rendered the pasta dough to hard. I added two of the whites which were left over from the sauce. BTW this is why one of should better weigh out eggs instead of count them (too bad I didn’t think about his from the beginning so I could have weighed the eggs I used). The original recipe called for bread sticks with chocolate and prosciutto di Parma which I skipped (but which nonetheless sounds like a good accompaniment – as you’re probably aware of meat and chocolate also go very well together!).
450 g plain flour
4 eggs + 2 whites (adjust according to size of eggs)
55 g cocoa powder
1 T olive oil (leave out? – see comment in text)
Knead. Let rest for 30 minutes or more. Use pasta machine to work through dough until smooth. Roll out to desired thickness and cut into tagliatelle or spaghetti.
To start with the dough was not very elastic, so I immediately regretted that I had added the olive oil (which I optimistically added to the dough, hoping that it would perhaps help bind the crumbles together – only to discover that more eggs were needed anyway). The reason for this is that the olive oil interferes with the formation of gluten because it covers the proteins glutenin and gliadin and prevents them from reacting with each other to form gluten. So next time I would try without the olive oil (or at least wait until after the dough had rested before adding the oil to allow time for the flour to be completely hydrated).
I used a manual pasta machine to knead through the dough and make tagliatelle strips of the dough.
The color is wonderful and handling sheets like this certainly sparks new ideas. How about a chocolate lasagna with a custard cream?
When partly dry, the surface easily cracks.
5 dL cream (38% fat)
4 egg yolks
100 g sugar
50 g grated parmesan
Bring cream to boil. Remove from heat. Add sugar and parmesan while stirring. Add egg yolks. Whisk and heat to 80-85 °C. Serve with chocolate tagliatelle.
Verdict: Very nice! Because of the rich cream, it’s a good idea not to serve a large plate of it though. As was the case last time I tried the cocoa/parmesan combo, it was as if something was missing. Probably something acidic like lemon or lime. The cream is quite sweet, so the dish would probably work best for a dessert (but a guest I served it too said he wasn’t quite sure whether it was a starter or a dessert). I think a lemon or lime sorbet/sherbet would be nice with it! Or why not try Morimoto’s breadstick with prosciutto?
Tasting the parmesan cream by it self was quite surprising, because – believe or not – it reminded me of vanilla! In fact I’m quite sure that many would be convinced that it was vanilla cream (with a special little twist added). Certainly the color and the texture look a lot like vanilla, but the flavour also reminded me of vanilla. This was perhaps the most fascinating discovery and I’ll certainly have to explore this further. The weird thing of course is that once I start googling for parmesan and vanilla I find both recipes and menu examples (Sour dough loaf with parmesan, vanilla & truffle butter, Fava Bean Custard with Parmesan/Vanilla Foam & Grilled Belgium Endive). There is nothing new under the sunflavor pairing, molecular gastronomy, recipe, TGRWT